When Pokemon Go first came out three months ago, everyone jumped on the hype train. Everyone was downloading it to see what the craze was about, but who exactly was downloading it and how far did this trend spread? As time goes on, apps tend to lose users, as well, so how many people still use the augmented reality “fitness” app? Does it still hold a place in our society today? I am a user of this app myself, and I wanted to take a deeper look at how huge Pokemon Go was when it was released and if it is still popular today.
Pokemon Go has been a record breaking app since its launch on July 6, 2016. On the day of its release, the app received six million downloads, which ended up overloading the game’s server and forced Niantic, Inc, the developers of the app, to halt the download of the app. Despite the setback, Pokemon Go was soon available to download again and Apple said that it was the most downloaded app in its first week of release than any other app on the App Store. To date, the app now has an estimated 500 million downloads and is the fastest app to reach $500 million in revenue, with an estimated three to five million dollars made in its first day.
Even thought the app has about 500 million downloads, the usage of Pokemon Go has dropped considerably. Today, a little more than 20 million people access the app daily, when it had 40 millions users at its peak in July. Even thought the app has experienced a steep drop in users, it remains on the list of top five apps people use on a daily basis. In Android users, Pokemon Go is used of six percent daily, becoming the fifth most used app behind Facebook’s Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Snapchat. In the U.S, the app was downloaded 34,300,000 times and 30,800,000 users are still active users on the app. Of those 30,800,000 users, Pokemon Go is used for at least 43 minutes a day, while Instagram and Snapchat only get around 20 to 25 minutes of daily usage. So while it may seem that the numbers have gone down overall, many people are still using the app and proving that Pokemon Go is still alive and well.
Of the 30,800,000 Pokemon Go users, many of those users are people who grew up with the Pokemon games and television show. However, there is a significant percentage of parents and grandparents that also use the app, as well. Early adopters of the games were the Millennials (people between the ages of 16 to 36), who made up 55 percent of the base usage of Pokemon Go upon its release. As time went on, amount of Millennial users dropped to 45 percent. Surprising, those who make up the Silent generation (adults born between 1925 through 1945) make up five percent of the app user base. Their number has neither rose or dropped, as they are are a constant in the app user demographic.
When it come to Pokemon Go, it turns of women are the more avid gamers, as they make up 60 percent of the user base, while men make up the remaining 40 percent. It took a few days for women to jump on the Pokemon band wagon, as less than 20 percent of women adopted the app when it came out. After two weeks, women started to use the app more, as women’s usage of the app increased to above 40 percent. Its unclear why women make up the major demographic of Pokemon Go users, but it goes against the norm that men are more avid gamers than women are.
Pokemon Go has made waves in mainstream media and people have been quick to adopt it, but what made this app so popular. Nostalgia is a huge influence, as the app brings all the characters back from the 1990’s television show, card game, and video game. People remember the original 151 Pokemon they grew up with and get to see and interact with them in a whole new way. However, the app also made a way for people to escape the harsh reality we live in. With the political climate as hostile as it is and for whatever hard times people are dealing with in school or at work, people can take their mind off all of that by just catching some Pokemon.It also gave people something to post about on social media, which, in turn, made people download the app to see what the craze was about. Social media was a huge factor of Pokemon Go spreading like wildfire to the people.
Apps and fads fade, but it looks like Pokemon Go will be around for a while. Especially since there have been rumors that the app will receive an update that will include another generation of Pokemon, people are sure to come back and collect more of their favorite monsters. Pokemon Go has entered our lives and is not going anywhere.